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Commitment 11 progress report: December 2019

Open Government Partnership New Zealand National Action Plan 2018-2020

Progress report to: December 2019

Commitment 11: Authoritative dataset of government organisations as open data

Lead agency: Department of Internal Affairs

Objective: To release and maintain an authoritative dataset of government organisations as open, machine-readable data to enhance the transparency of government structures to the public. There will be cross-agency agreement to maintain this dataset, providing assurance that the data being used is the authoritative source. This dataset becomes a foundation for both digital services and information about government.

Ambition: New Zealanders and others will have access to authoritative, open data about government agencies and their roles, learn more about how government is structured, what agencies do, and be able to reuse the open data in new and innovative ways.

OGP values: Transparency, Accountability and Technology and Innovation


Milestone 1

Identify owners contributors and maintainers for the data held in the proposed dataset.

Start/End dates: October 2018 - December 2018

Progress: Completed

Milestone 2

Investigate and agree on the appropriate open standards for the dataset.

Start/End dates: October 2018 - December 2019

Progress: Underway

Milestone 3

Work with identified dataset contributors to agree process for ongoing maintenance of the dataset.

Start/End dates: December 2018 – June 2019

Progress: Underway

Milestone 4

Release the open data set on and make it available via the open data Application Programming Interface (API) and promote the opportunities of reuse that the dataset provides with government agencies, non-governmental organisations, business, and the public.

Start/End dates: December 2018 – June 2020

Progress: Underway


What we have been doing

  • Regular meetings with officials and civil society to discuss:
    • What it means for the data to be authoritative
    • User needs of agencies and the wider government system for the data
    • Individual agencies (e.g. State Services Commission (SSC) and Archives NZ) have presented their data models (what type of information is collected, what its purpose is etc). This helps show where there’s a common set of needs, like modelling government organisational change (e.g. mergers, re-namings, disestablishments etc), and how the data that’s collected varies from agency to agency.
  • SSC has committed to releasing its government organisational name data as open data on in early 2020.

How we are including diverse voices


How we are keeping diverse communities informed

  • Using public channels and public and private Twitter accounts amplify and extend the reach of this work.

What's next?

  • Releasing data
    • Working with SSC to complete the publication of organisation name and change data.
    • Working with Statistics NZ, members of civil society and officials from agencies who hold the data, on releasing more data about the ‘machinery of government’ (e.g. Ministers, portfolios, vote, appropriations, legislation etc).
  • Finalising data model
    • Scheduling workshops with the representative group of government officials and civil society members working on this commitment, to continue to explore and document agency data models and user needs. The next one is in early March.
  • Future focus
    • Working with Product owner of to reuse the SSC organisational name data in the Government A-Z.
    • Ongoing conversations with Archives NZ about the All of Government ontology work they’re leading.
    • Exploring using this year’s GovHack as a platform for showing the potential of the organisation data. This idea came from discussion on the Open Government Ninjas forum.

Links – Evidence of progress and milestones achieved